Greene leads Giants to shock win against injury-hit Cats

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Toby Greene’s brilliant four-goal first half has helped fire GWS to a stunning seven-point upset of Geelong, putting another dent in the Cats’ flagging AFL premiership defence.

Giants captain Greene starred early, with former skippers Stephen Coniglio and Callan Ward also significant contributors in the gutsy 12.9 (81) to 10.14 (74) victory at GMHBA Stadium.

It was the Giants’ fourth win under first-year coach Adam Kingsley, helping Greene celebrate his 200-game milestone in fine style while improving their record to 4-7.

Toby Greene, right, celebrates a goal. Credit: Morgan Hancock, AFL Photos

The shock result inflicted more pain on injury-hit Geelong (5-6), who have now suffered three-straight defeats for the second time this season.

Tall defender Esava Ratugolea is the Cats’ latest injury concern after being substituted off with a hamstring concern.

Greene kicked 4.1 from seven disposals in the first half while Jake Riccardi and Brent Daniels both finished with three goals, including two crucial majors each in the final term as GWS held off a huge late challenge.

They led by 24 points at the eight-minute mark of the last quarter, but Geelong stormed back into the contest, roared on by a vocal home crowd of 21,349.

Geelong’s Sam De Koning in action during round 11. Credit: Robert Cianflone, Getty Images

The Cats kicked four of the next five goals and twice trimmed the margin to two points before Daniels shut the gate from close range with little more than two minutes left.

Coniglo (26 disposals, seven clearances), Ward (19, seven), Tom Green (28, three) and Lachie Ash (26, two) were outstanding, while Lachie Keeffe limited Cats spearhead Tom Hawkins to one goal from 10 disposals.

Geelong became the first club in AFL/VFL history to field three Irish players in the same team when Oisin Mullin made his debut alongside Zach Tuohy and Mark O’Connor.

Speedster Mullin showed glimpses and almost kicked a brilliant goal, spinning out of a tackle by the Giants’ own Irishman Callum Brown before his snap shot floated narrowly wide.

He was also caught holding-the-ball by Greene, who wheeled off the mark to kick a stunning goal from 50 metres during the second quarter.

The Giants kicked 4.2 to 1.2 for the term – three of those from Greene – to take a 17-point lead to the main break.

GWS looked home when they broke out to a game-high 24-point lead early in the final term.

Tyson Stengle and Ollie Henry kicked two goals each to drag Geelong back into the contest, bringing the home crowd to life.

But Daniels’ last goal steadied the Giants, who hung on in a thriller.

Tom Stewart (31 disposals) was Geelong’s major ball-winner, with Mark Blicavs (22 touches, seven clearances) and Tom Atkins (20, six) also busy.


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